Former MP and journalist Maidin Packer dies at 66

SINGAPORE – Mr Mohamad Maidin Packer, a former People’s Action Party (PAP) MP and Malay/Muslim community leader, died on June 24 at age 66.

Mr Maidin was MP for Aljunied and Marine Parade GRCs from 1991 to 2006, holding political office over the same period as parliamentary secretary for Information and the Arts and later senior parliamentary secretary for Home Affairs, Education, and the Environment.

In a Facebook post, Prime Minister Lawrence Wong spoke of Mr Maidin’s contributions to the Malay/Muslim community. These included his work helming the Bulan Bahasa, or Malay Language Month, in the 1990s and his efforts to rejuvenate Geylang Serai.

“His pioneering efforts ensured that Geylang Serai remains a thriving hub for the Malay/Muslim community, and also laid the foundations for our plans for the upcoming Geylang Serai Cultural Belt,” PM Wong wrote. “More recently, he has continued to stay active in promoting and preserving the rich cultural heritage of the Malay community.”

He added that he had gone to pay his respects to Mr Maidin on the morning of June 25.

Senior Minister Lee Hsien Loong, in a letter to Mr Maidin’s widow, Madam Rahimah Asmore, on June 25, said: “His deep connections with the Malay/Muslim community made him a good adviser on matters relating to the community and on national issues.

“Successive prime ministers, including myself, appreciated his insights and political sense. His ability to connect and inform the community was valuable to us.”

Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean said in a Facebook post that he had paid his last respects to Mr Maidin.

SM Teo, who was Education Minister from 1997 to 2003, said: “We served together in the Ministry of Education, where he helped to initiate parent support groups in our schools. He was also very active in the cultural scene, including Bulan Bahasa.”

Mr Maidin began his career in journalism, rising to become the assistant editor of Malay newspapers Berita Harian and Berita Minggu before being appointed political secretary to then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong in 1990 and standing for the 1991 General Election.


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